I entered training camp less optimistic and enthusiastic about a Cowboys’ season than at any time since the head coach was Dave Campo.
After the preseason, I feel even worse.
Thursday night’s 27-3 loss to the Broncos obviously isn’t singularly alarming, but it does cap a crappy off-season in which the Cowboys – coming off three consecutive 8-8 seasons – glaringly failed to improve. We know the Cowboys lost DeMarcus Ware, Jason Hatcher, Sean Lee and (for the first four games) Orlando Scandrick off the defense. So, um, who exactly have they added to make them better? Henry Melton didn’t play a pre-season snap. Nor did Morris Claiborne.
Considering DeMarcus Lawrence’s injury, the only new face that will be an upgrade is first-round pick Zack Martin. Nice, but hardly reason to think 8-8 can be matched, much less surpassed. Adding to the fun, just yesterday fourth-round pick B.W. Webb was cut (a day after former 4th-round pick Matt Johnson was cut), Jakar Hamilton was suspended for substance abuse and Jerry Jones made negative headlines by sorta, kinda, maybe tampering with Vikings’ running back Adrian Peterson and by shoving aside the notion of Jimmy Johnson in the Ring of Honor because he’s still not over the bitter divorce.
Then last night it was Brandon Weeden throwing and Phillip Tanner running and Laron Byrd catching and guys named Dontavis Sapp and Ryan Smith attempting to tackle. In other words, it was an ugly end to a hideous preseason.
For only the fifth time in their 55-year history the Cowboys went winless in the preseason. They were the worst NFL team this preseason, going 0-4 and getting outscored by a whopping 116-60, a league-worst minus 56-point differential.
At Wednesday’s annual kickoff luncheon which is usually spiced with positive hyperbole, even Jones was relatively glum. The owner admitted 2014 would be an “uphill battle.”
Sept. 7 and the 49ers are looming. I cringe at the thought.
A native Texan who was born in Duncanville and graduated from UT-Arlington, Richie Whitt has been a mainstay in the Metroplex media since 1986. He’s held prominent roles on all media platforms including newspaper (Fort Worth Star-Telegram, Dallas Observer), radio (105.3 The Fan) and TV (co-host on TXA 21 and numerous guest appearances, including NBC 5). He currently lives in McKinney with his wife, Sybil, and two very spoiled dogs.